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Intel Core i5-14600K vs AMD Ryzen 5 7600X: Which CPU should you buy?

Intel Core i5-14600K vs AMD Ryzen 5 7600X: Which CPU should you buy?


  • Source: Intel

    Intel Core i5-14600K

    Intel’s latest

    Intel’s Core i5-14600K is a refresh of the i5 from the 13th-generation Raptor Lake line, so while it’s a powerful chip in its own right, much like its predecessor, it’s not much of a reinvention or major advancement. If you’re looking for some higher clocks, you’ll find those, but you won’t get much else.

    Pros

    • Can handle gaming and productivity
    • Great multi-core performance
    • Big upgrade over 12th Gen and older chips
    Cons

    • Not much different from last year’s model

  • amd ryzen 5 7600 in box

    Source: AMD

    AMD Ryzen 5 7600X

    Great performance for a great price

    $249 $300 Save $51

    This Ryzen chip offers up some impressive performance for the money, packing in six cores, 12 threads, and up to 5.4GHz boost clock. It’s clocked slightly higher than the 7600, which you will pay a slight premium for, but even still, it’ll be tough to find a better value chip. 

    Pros

    • Solid all-rounder
    • Good for gaming
    • Excellent value
    Cons

    • Not the latest and greatest
    • Outperformed by similarly-priced chips

The 14th Gen Intel Raptor Lake Refresh chips are finally here, but do they do enough to warrant your purchase? Are they worth getting over other similarly-priced chips, such as the Ryzen 5 7600X? While the changes from the 13th to 14th generation aren’t exactly massive, that isn’t to say these aren’t great CPUs worth considering.



Both of these mid-range chips are solid buys on a budget, whether you’re a gamer or just looking to get work done, but they each have their own strengths and weaknesses. So, the question becomes, which chip will suit you best? To make things easy, we’ve collected all the information you’ll need to decide below.


Price, availability, and specs

Intel’s new i5-14600K chip launched Oct. 17 at various selected retailers, so you won’t have to wait if you want one. Get yours for $319 at full price. The Ryzen 7600X is also out now at all your favorite retailers, and you can get one for $300 (or less on sale). This chip is a version of the original Ryzen 5 7600 with higher clocks, a higher power draw, and no included cooler for $70 more.

  • Intel Core i5-14600KAMD Ryzen 5 7600X
    BrandIntelAMD
    CPU Modeli5-14600K5 7600X
    Cores6P / 8E6
    Threads2012
    ArchitectureRaptor Lake RefreshZen 4
    ProcessIntel 75nm TSMC
    SocketLGA 1700AM5
    Base Clock Speed2.6GHz / 3.5GHz4.7
    Boost Clock Speed4.0GHz / 5.3GHz5.4
    GraphicsIntel UHD Graphics 770Radeon RDNA 2
    TDP181W105W

Performance

AMD Ryzen 5 7600X

While we haven’t reviewed the Ryzen 5 7600X ourselves, we did review the Ryzen 5 7600. We don’t have like-for-like performance differential comparisons here, but that doesn’t mean we don’t know what these chips can do.

In our review of the Core i5-14600K, which has six performance cores, eight efficiency cores, 20 total threads, and speeds up to 5.3GHz, we called it a “great all-rounder” as a chip and found it to offer slightly improved performance over the last-gen i5-13600K in terms of both single- and multi-core workloads. Slightly improved may not sound so impressive, but when we reviewed last year’s Intel Core i5-13600K, we said it was the “best CPU to put in a gaming PC” at the time, so any upgrade is definitely a win. In our testing, the Core i5-14600K also outperformed the Ryzen 7 7800X3D (a more expensive, more powerful chip than the Ryzen 5 7600X) by an impressive 37% in multi-core processing.

If you’re looking for a more powerful chip, the Core i5-14600K will likely be the top performer. However, when it comes to gaming, this won’t be a night-and-day difference.

When compared to the 7600X, it’s no surprise the Core i5-14600K will be the better chip for multi-core workloads, as the Intel CPU brings 14 cores and 20 threads to the table, while the Ryzen chip has only six cores and 12 threads (along with a base clock speed of 4.7Ghz and a boost clock of 5.4GHz). However, the 7600X is still a strong choice for gamers who may not need an endless series of cores and threads to handle running the latest games at high framerates. In fact, when we reviewed the 7600, we didn’t even recommend spending the extra cash on the slightly more powerful 7600X unless you were planning on pairing it with a beastly GPU.

Gaming, though, tends to rely more on single-core performance, but not everyone’s a gamer. If you’re looking to get work done, multi-core performance will be a lot more relevant. Tasks like photo or video editing, for example, are best done with lots of cores and threads. While a chip like the 7600X can certainly handle editing a video, the i5-14600K is a lot more capable, thanks to its additional cores and threads.

If you’re looking for a more powerful chip, the Core i5-14600K will likely be the top performer. However, when it comes to gaming, this won’t be a night-and-day difference; although, for multi-core performance, the difference there will be more stark. So, make sure to keep in mind what you’re planning to do on your computer when deciding which CPU is better for your use case.

Value

intel-14th-gen-cpus

Price to performance is where things get more complicated between these two chips. You might think opting for the Intel chip makes more sense if it’s more powerful and only $20 more. However, the Ryzen 5 7600X is routinely on sale for around the $250 mark at this point in its life cycle, and that’s not all. The Core i5-14600K is only slightly improved over the i5-13600K, and with a little luck, you can find the previous generation on sale for under $300. And with the i5-14600K now out, you’ll likely see more steady discounts.

If you’re primarily a gamer looking for a solid chip that won’t hold back your framerates, which the Ryzen 5 7600X can do for most, you may well end up better served by saving some cash with the 7600X, or you might be able to grab a Core i5-13600K for the same price as the Ryzen 5 7600X if you’re looking for some extra multi-core power.

It’s also worth keeping in mind that the Ryzen 5 7600X, the i5-14600K, and the i5-13600K all support overclocking, so if you’ve got the cooling for it, you can try and squeeze a little extra performance out of whichever chip you go with to make your money go just a little bit further.

Intel Core i5-14600K vs AMD Ryzen 5 7600X: Which should you buy?

At their retail prices, the Intel Core i5-14600K is likely the better buy, even if it’s slightly more expensive than the AMD Ryzen 5 7600X. You can do some serious gaming with the i5-14600K, as you can with the Ryzen 5 7600X, but you won’t have to make any multi-core sacrifices with the Intel chip. While it might not be much of an upgrade over the i5-13600K, that doesn’t mean the i5-14600K isn’t a strong CPU, especially for its $319 asking price.

Intel Core i5-14600K vs AMD Ryzen 5 7600X: Which CPU should you buy?

Source: Intel

Intel Core i5-14600K

Winner

The Intel Core i5-14600K is a refresh of the 13th Gen Raptor Lake line, so while this 14th Gen chip is certainly powerful in its own right, much like its predecessor, it’s not much of a reinvention or major advancement. If you’re looking for some higher clocks, you’ll find those, but you won’t get much else.

However, depending on how low the price of the Ryzen 5 7600X gets, as well as whether you can find a last-gen i5-13600K (which is extremely competitive with the i5-14600K) at a decent discount, you may well be better served by opting for either the 7600X or the Core i5-13600K instead of the i5-14600K. This is especially true for gamers who won’t benefit as much from Intel’s better multicore performance.

amd ryzen 5 7600 in box

Source: AMD

AMD Ryzen 5 7600X

Great alternative

$250 $300 Save $50

This Ryzen chip offers up some impressive performance for the money, packing in 6 cores, 12 threads, and up to 5.4GHz boost clock. It’s clocked slightly higher than the 7600, which you will pay a slight premium for, but even still, it’ll be tough to find a better value chip.



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